A Singaporean describes it this way: Part of the whole ritual in eating this dish is smothering your cream-coloured chicken fat laced rice with ribbons of sweet dark soy sauce, chilli sauce and pounded ginger and to mix it all together, matching flavour for flavour.
Hainanese Chicken Rice is one of the primary specialties of Singapore and is often considered the country’s national dish. Filipinos love it for its flavorful, uncomplicated taste. Every time I am in Singapore, I always order Hainanese Chicken Rice. Mixing the chicken meat with the dip with the rice was just so heavenly. It must be the ginger and garlic flavors that brings out the flavors.
Let me share this simple recipe which I am sure you will enjoy cooking. It is simple.
12 cups water
4 fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon salt
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1 whole chicken
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2-3 cups Jasmine rice
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
6 cups reserved stock from boiling chicken
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tomatoes, sliced
2 cucumbers, sliced
1. Bring 12 cups of water with ginger, salt and garlic to a boil in a large pot.
2. Put chicken in the boiling water and let it simmer for 5 minutes.
3. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and let the chicken cool for 20 minutes.
4. Repeat the boiling and cooling process one more time.
5. Set chicken aside when cooked and tender.
6. Remember to reserve the chicken stock for the rice.
7. Plunge the chicken into ice-cold water for 5 minutes to prevent over cooking and to tighten its skin.
8. Brush on a mixture of sesame oil and soy sauce on the chicken, then let it cool at room temperature.
1. Wash rice thoroughly and drain.
2. Heat vegetable oil in a pot and fry garlic and ginger until golden brown.
3.Add the drained rice and fry for 3 to 4 minutes before pouring in 6 cups of chicken stock and adding sesame oil and salt.
4. Cook the rice uncovered until the broth is absorbed.
5. Finally, cover the pot tightly and reduce the temperature until the rice is cooked.
6. Cut the chicken into pieces, then serve over the rice and garnish with tomatoes and cucumbers.
7. Add chili sauce or other spices to taste.
The Satay and Hainanese Chicken Rice recipes are just simple tastebud teasers to give food lovers an idea of what the annual food festival has to offer. After savoring a preview of what Chinese cuisine-infused Singaporean food is all about, expect a bigger culinary feast in next year’s Singapore Food Festival.
Log on to www.YourSingapore.com for more information.